It all started when our (Shobana and Chandrashekhar’s) son wanted to “go to school”. He was 4 years young then. We wanted a school that will let him “be himself” and cater to his emotional quotient (EQ), social quotient (SQ) as well as intelligence quotient (IQ) as his IQ borders the category of “genius” (making him a “gifted” child). We also wanted it to be a democratic environment as we followed democratic parenting at home. Since we did not find such a school, we wanted to start one ourselves, not only for the sake of our son, but for all the kids and families seeking such an environment.
Prakash, a co-founder of BeMe Open School, has been encouraging of the idea and introduced me to the very successful Sudbury Valley School, USA, and Democratic School of Hadera, Israel.
In the democratic environment, we bring together best practices and expert resources from around the world so that the child goes on to “master” whatever they want to.
Summer camps were conducted during 2017 and 2018 inspired by the best practices at Center for Talented Youth, Johns Hopkins, USA. After I joined Alliance University as a faculty, I proposed and started a “Center for Talented Children” there and organised “Deep learning” programs in summer 2019.
Our definition of a “gifted” child is consistent with that of of National Institute of Advanced Studies.
As much as we facilitate external journey, we focus on “inward” journey through yoga and mindfulness-based meditation so that children are “grounded”, have an internal moral compass and know to be happy no matter what goes on around them.
I have a Ph.D. in Computer Science from Washington University in USA and an undergraduate degree from BITS, Pilani. In addition to my research experience, I have teaching experience in USA as well as in India. Prior to my graduate studies, I had done software engineering for Visa International and Sun Microsystems, USA, as well as Wipro, India, among other companies.
Vibudhaalaya became a reality only because of the honorary support poured in by the members of our advisory board, support team and facilitators, who all believe in the cause. I am forever indebted to them for this.